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Showing posts from May, 2014

There and Back Again

If you've been wondering why there have been no posts of late, I've been away for the past two weeks, visiting Israel. I'll put up some pictures in a future post, along with my review of The People of Forever Are Not Afraid , by Israeli author Shani Boianjiu. In the meantime, here are some books I finished before the trip. 19. Under the Jeweled Sky by Alison McQueen In my post on book topics I wanted to see more of, I included the India/Pakistan conflict. Then, I came across this book in the library. It's a story set against the backdrop of the India/Pakistan Partition, although that does not at first seem to be its main focus. At first glance, it's a fairly simple star-crossed lovers' tale, but the basic plot takes on a deeper significance within the larger context of the time period. This is a story about what it really means for people to be ripped apart, about what happens when you can't change the past, and there are no easy answers. 20. The

Book Review: Behind the Gem

17. Behind the Gem by Ken Hart An ordinary man finds himself suddenly transported across space and time and romantically pursued by a beautiful, gentle alien. Such is the conceit of Behind the Gem , and the plot's fast pace and simple wording make it read at first like bizarre fantasy. But it is so fast and easy to read, with event piling cleanly upon event, that one is drawn in. Gradually, explanations are revealed for the hasty beginning and the plot becomes both more interesting and more subtle. The outdoorsy, outspoken protagonist, Ray, is hard not to sympathize with. He is a masculine everyman with plenty of heart, soul,and brain. The female protagonist, known as Amber, is sympathetic, but less interesting aside from her alien nature. Despite her odd appearance, stereotypical femininity is her chief trait. This apparent stark delineation of the sexes is called into sharp relief when Hart pulls a twist that undermines the very structure of gender. I wish that more had be